10 Major Modes of Transportation in the Philippines

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Within this archipelagic country of more than 7,500 islands, transportation in the Philippines refers to the various modes of transportation. The Philippine government has been enhancing transportation from a previously underdeveloped state through a variety of direct infrastructure initiatives, including a rise in air, sea, road, and rail transportation as well as transport hubs.

In the country as of May 2022, there were more than 5.8 million registered motor vehicles. Of these, 60 percent were motorcycles and tricycles, followed by utility vehicles (18%), cars and SUVs (16%), and trucks (3%) in that order.

Here are the 10 major modes of transportation in the Philippines.

1. Automobiles

American-made vehicles were first sold in the Philippines during the 1898–1946 period of American colonial rule, which marked the beginning of the country’s automobile industry.

The Progressive Car Manufacturing Program (PCMP), a scheme with planned increases in local parts content requirements that also permitted programme participants to import a specific percentage of CBU automobiles, was established by the government in 1972.

Cars make up 9% of the nation’s total number of registered motor vehicles as of May 2022, while SUVs make up 7% of the total.

Also Read: The Public Transportation Chaos Intensifies

2. Motorcycles

As of May 2022, motorcycles accounted for 49 percent of all registered motor vehicles, making them the most popular mode of private transportation in the nation. Additionally, according to a 2021 Social Weather Stations poll, 36% of all households reported having a motorcycle, making about 50% of all vehicle owners. They are sometimes viewed as a less expensive option to purchasing a private car because they are frequently utilised for package and food delivery services to move items.

3. Limousines

The Philippines’ president and vice president ride in limousines, and affluent families can hire them for their weddings. Due to factors like cost and traffic, they are rarely seen on Philippine roads otherwise, but when they are, they are employed for weddings or limo services. The Chrysler 300C, Lincoln Town Car, Mercedes-Benz E-Class and S-Class, as well as limousines built on SUVs like the Cadillac Escalade and Hummer H2, are examples of limos.

4. Jeepneys

In the Philippines, jeepneys are the most widely used kind of public transportation. They are renowned for their colourful decorating and crammed seating and were initially constructed from US military jeeps left over from World War II. They are now a widely recognised representation of Filipino culture.

Modern jeepneys are now made in the Philippines by independently owned workshops and factories using surplus engines and parts imported from Japan. The original jeepneys were just military jeeps that Willys & Ford had modified. The majority of the jeepneys in Cebu, an island in central Philippines, are made from used Japanese trucks that were designed for cargo. These trucks go by the euphemistic name of “surplus.”

5. Motorized tricycles

Tricycles are a class of motorised vehicles from the Philippines that are made up of a motorbike attached to a passenger cab (in Filipino, traysikel; in Cebuano, traysikol). It is one of the most often used forms of public or private transportation in the Philippines, especially in rural regions, along with the jeepney. These public utility vehicles either follow a predetermined route or can be hired, much like a taxi.

Around 11 percent of all registered motor vehicles in the nation as of May 2022 are motorised tricycles.

Also Read: A Call For More Capacity and Ventilation for Transportations

6. Non-motorized land transport

In the Philippines, there are both human-powered and animal-powered modes of transportation, including walking, cycling, pedicabs (also called traysikad or padyak), and horse- or cattle-drawn kalesas. A clean, “very cost-effective transportation system” that “brings about enormous health, economic and social co-benefits, particularly for the urban poor,” according to the United Nations and groups like Clean Air Asia, supports the inclusion of non-motorized transport.

7. Rail transport

The Manila Light Rail Transit System (Lines 1 and 2), Manila Metro Rail Transit System (Line 3), and the PNR Metro South Commuter Line are the three rapid transit lines and one commuter rail line that provide services for rail transportation in the Philippines. The country’s railway network will grow from 77 kilometres in 2017 to more than 320 kilometres by 2022, according to official plans.

8. Boats

The Pasig River Ferry Service is a river ferry service that travels along the Pasig River and provides service to Metro Manila. There were 2 lines and 17 stations operating across the entire boat network. The first line was the Pasig River Line, which connected Nagpayong Station in Pasig to Plaza Mexico in Intramuros, Manila. The Marikina River Line, the second line, ran from Makati’s Guadalupe station to Marikina’s Santa Elena station.

9. Airlines

The first commercial airline in Asia, Philippine Airlines (PAL) is the country of the Philippines’ flag carrier. The largest airline in the nation, Philippine Airlines continues to offer both the most domestic and international flights to the Philippines. In 33 nations and territories in Asia, North America, South America, Africa, Oceania, and Europe, Philippine Airlines flies to 8 domestic and 58 overseas destinations as of 2013. There are hubs for the airline in Davao, Manila, Cebu, and Clark.

10. Ports and harbors

The Port of Manila is the busiest port, particularly the Manila International Cargo Terminal and the Eva Macapagal Port Terminal, all of which are located in Manila’s pier district. Aside from Puerto Princesa and San Fernando, other cities with active ports and piers are Bacolod, Batangas City, Cagayan de Oro, Cebu City, Davao City, Butuan, Iligan, Iloilo City, Jolo, Legazpi City, Lucena City, Allen, Ormoc, Ozamiz, Surigao, and Tagbilaran.

The majority of these terminals are part of the Strong Republic Nautical Highway, an aquatic system designed during President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s administration and allowing land vehicles to travel between the various islands using roll-on/roll-off (ro-ro) ferries.

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